A Tale in the Desert
A Tale in the Desert is a massively multiplayer role-playing game set in ancient Egypt.
It uses the internet to allow thousands of players to play together in the same world. All of the characters you will see and talk to in the game are controlled by other people just like you, not by a computer.
A Tale in the Desert is the first online game to focus on long-term planning and long-term goals rather than combat. Goals include the creation of great works of art and architecture, becoming a powerful leader, and building wealth.
Objective: To build a base of operations.
Similarities to: Tropico, Rollercoaster Tycoon, Zeus, Capitalism
Explanation: Your base consists of machines that produce goods, ranging from simple objects like bricks and boards to highly customized goods like gearboxes, mixed paints, and cut gems.
The Challenge: Your base must be designed to operate efficiently and must take into account the values of the goods, supply, and demand.
Puzzles: As you unlock new technologies, you will need to figure out how they work and how you can use them to increase your efficiency.
Objective: To make a profit trading goods and services with other players.
Similarities to: Master of Orion 2, Port Royale
Challenge 1: A Tale in the Desert contains too many goods for you to produce everything you need. You must trade to obtain the necessities.
Challenge 2: Learning skills is extremely expensive. To recoup the cost, you must figure out how to hire out your skills to other players.
Puzzles: You must figure out what your goods are worth, and what your time is worth. You must decide whether to give things away freely, and hope for generosity in return, or whether to trade on a more controlled, negotiated basis.
Objective: To increase your powers by performing ritual tests of character.
Similarities to: The multiplayer games you see on Reality TV shows.
The Challenge: There are dozens of different tests, each one a unique ritual that increases your powers. They run the gamut from building a pyramid, to breeding and exhibiting a scarab beetle, to winning a dueling tournament, to searching for hidden altars, to winning an election. They only have one thing in common: they all require you to strategize against other players.
Objective: To lift Egypt out of anarchy into true civilization.
The Challenge: A civilization must have rules: rules about who gets to own which piece of land, rules about what kind of pollution is permitted, rules about inappropriate behavior, rules about who gets to benefit from your research labors, rules about who owns which vein of ore. Egyptians must choose these rules for themselves.
The Puzzle: Can you do better than the real governments of today? Can you create a truly fair and just society?
A Tale in the Desert
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